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National Assembly Vows To Reposition Sports In Nigeria

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Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, yesterday in Abuja promised that the National Assembly would deploy all within its legislative powers to reposition the sports sector in Nigeria.
Dogara, while speaking at a one-day National Sports Summit organised by the House Committee on Sports, said the repositioning was necessary in the interest of peace and progress in the industry.
The summit has the theme “Growing Nigeria Sports from the Grassroots for Championship, Excellence and Sustainable Development’’.
The House Speaker said the summit captured the place of sports as a veritable tool of sustainable development.
Dogara listed some of the summit’s objectives to include facilitating sports development in Nigeria through adequate legislation of policies and helping to harmonise sports polices for effective and efficient implementation.
He said this was also necessary because the potential for Nigeria to become a global power in sports could not be limited.
“We have a large pool of youth population with rich talents and passion for sports.
“What is needed is to effectively harness these endowments in order to unlock a world of treasure that can effectively drive our development,” the Speaker said.
Dogara lamented that sports in Nigeria have continued to be at an epileptic state without significant contribution because there has been a management failure in sports management.
“If Nigeria gets sports management right, the sector should be contributing more to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) than the other major sectors we rely on today.
“Nigeria sports has been bedeviled with series of teething problems, this situation has led to growing concern for stakeholders in sports and a serious agitation for the need to salvage the situation,’’ he said.
Earlier, the Chairman, House Committee on Sports, GoniLawan, had said the summit was aimed at fashioning a way for the enactment of proper legislation for sports in the country.
He added that it would help in removing impediments hindering sports development.
“Such legislation, when enacted with the support of all stakeholders, will go a long way in removing the burden of sports sponsorship from government,’’ the committee chairman said.

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Athletics: Okagbare Begins Preparation For Tokyo 2020

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Blessing Okagbare, yesterday started her preparations for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics at the National Trials.
The opening day of the Tokyo 2020 National Trials will see Okagbare competing in the 100m against highly rated Grace Nwokocha
Okagbare, the 8th time national champions is the favourite to win the event again, but Grace Nwokocha remains one of her biggest threats.
The American-based track queen won the championship from 2009 to 2014 and returned to win the 2016 edition after missing out in 2015.
Despite her qualification for the Olympics, Okagbare will be hoping to continue her winning streak and go to the Olympics in high spirits.
Apart from the 100m finals expected to take place in the afternoon, there will be shotput men final with all eyes on  Chukwuebuka Enekwechi.

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LAA Holds Lucrative Track Meet, Next Week

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The Lagos State Athletics Association has announced it would be holding a lucrative Athletics Meet on Thursday, June 24, 2021, at the Teslim Balogun Stadium.
Yussuf Alli, who is the Meet Director for the Lagos Open Athletics Championship, made the disclosure on Wednes-day even as he revealed that arrangements were in top gear to have an elite cast of athletes in the one-day meet.
According to Alli, the Lagos Open Athletics Championship will simultaneously serve as a qualifying window for the Tokyo Olympics as well as a preparatory event for athletes that have already qualified for the sporting showpiece.
“This is another fantastic window for those seeking to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics as well as those seeking quality competition to stay in shape for the Olympics,” Alli said.
“The Lagos State Athletics Association, which is one of the most vibrant in the country, is out to organise a world-class event that would be the talk of the town as we count down to Tokyo,”  he added.
The list of events to be competed for at the Lagos Open Athletics Championship include, the 5,000 meters, 400 meters hurdles, 100 meters, 800 meters, 400 meters and 100 meters.
There would also be quality action in the 4×100 meters open, 4×100 meters open and 4×400 meters mixed relay.
Long jump, High jump, Triple jump, Shot put as well as  4×100 secondary schools relay and 4×100 secondary schools relay have all been pencilled down for the maiden Lagos Open Athletics Champion-ship.
Organisers have assured that the top three finishers across all the events will receive handsome prizes for their efforts.

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S’ Falcons Bow To World Champions

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The Super Falcons of Nigeria lost 2-0 to world champions, USA, in their final Group game at the 2021 Summer Series in Texas, USA.
The result means the African champions failed to win any of their three matches at the invitational tourna-ment, drawing one and losing the other two.
Kristen Press gave the Americans the lead on the stroke of half time, and before Lyn Williams killed Falcons hope of getting a draw with the second goal on the dot of 90 minutes.
With the victory, the world number one has now gone 42 games without tasting a defeat .As for the Falcons, the aim of participating in the Summer Series was to prepare them for a crucial 2022 African Women’s Champion-ship eliminator against perennial rivals, Ghana in October.
The African Women’s Championship will serve as qualifiers for the 2023 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

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